How to Expand Your Reach in Social Media When You Have No Budget

by Mack Collier

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Last night I was thrilled to join Full Sail University for a special Think Like a Rock Star webinar.  It was an amazing turnout, and I wanted to talk about one of the questions that an attendee asked.

Someone wanted to know how you can expand your reach in social media when you have no budget.  The answer is that you reward the behavior you want to encourage.

Years ago when I first started blogging, I had a nice little community reading my blog.  I would only get 50-100 visitors a day (This was 2006) but every post I wrote had comments, sometimes 15-20.  A blogger friend that was writing for a site that at the time got about 10,000 visitors a month (far more than my blog) left a comment saying ‘I just want to know why you get 10 or more comments on every post and I don’t get any’.  I told him ‘because I respond to my comments’.

I didn’t have many readers, but my level of engagement was much higher than blogs with huge readerships.  If you want to build your reach and engagement then start by rewarding the behavior you want to encourage.  If you want to get more comments on your blog, then start by responding to every comment.  Communicate to your readers that if they comment, that you will respond.  This seems like a no-brainer but you wouldn’t believe how many bloggers never respond to comments, then wonder why they get so few.

No matter how ‘small’ your blog or social media presence is, you’ll have some fans.  People that enjoy your content and that follow you because of it.  Cherish these people.  Even if there are only 2 of them, treat them like rock stars.  Because they are.  And these 2 fans will tell their friends to check you out and before you know it you have 5 fans.  Then 10, then 50, then 100.

The two most powerful words in social media are ‘Thank you’.  Whenever you see someone interacting with your content or sharing your content or recommending your content, then thank them, because they just did you a favor.  And since we all like to be appreciated, when you thank them that encourages them to keep sharing and interacting with your content.

Start small, grow big.

Pic via Flickr user aleske

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